AustraliaCopyright: Konrad Mostert


Capital: Canberra.
Currency: Australian Dollar (AUD).
Language: English.
Listen to the national anthem

Australia has been inhabited for around 40,000 years before contact with the Dutch in 1606 and in 1770 by the British, who used the distant land as a penal colony, centred mainly around New South Wales. Even today, the British are still called Pome, an acronym of 'Prisoners of Mother England'. In 1901 Australia was finally united as the six colonies came together to form Commonwealth of Australia.

Australia has sometimes been known as the worlds 'island continent' is one of the worlds wealthiest countries despite as much as 91% of the country is still covered with vegetation, some of which is unique to Australia itself.

Beer has been a favourite beverage for Australians (Aussies) and a world record was set by former Prime Minister Bob Hawke for downing 1.4 litres (2½ pints) of beer in just 11 seconds!

The biggest living organism in the world, resides within Australian territory - The Great Barrier Reef.

Great Barrier ReefCopyright: Tanya Puntti

It is so vast that it can be seen from space! The reef is some 2,300 km (1,430 miles) long and covers 214,000km2 (133,000 miles2) and more bizarrely it has its own post box!

The heaviest road legal vehicles can be found in Australia with some weighing as much as 200,000kg (220 tonnes)!

RoadtrainCopyright: Fritz Hiersche

Some trucks have 2 or 3trailers and when needed they are allowed to stack 3 flatbeds on top of each other!

The world longest fence can be found in Australia, stretching right across Western Australia. The Dingo fence in south-east Australia was 5,614km (3,488 miles) was completed in 1885 and took 6 years to complete and was also known as State Vermin Fence as well as the Emu Fence.

Dingo FenceCopyright: Wikimedia Commons

In 1907 a rabbit-proof fence was built and took 5 years to complete and was 3,253km (2,021 miles) long and designed to keep the rabbits away from the pastoral areas. This corralling, had a knock on effect as the areas that were 'protected' became havens for kangaroos and even rabbits who's populations exploded due to their main predator, the dingo being nowhere near.

Australia is a very unique place where the Australian Alps gets more snow than Switzerland, a place where the odd looking Wombats leave cube shaped poo, there are 3 times more sheep than people and the residents in Brisbane race Cockroaches!

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